I am not the type of person to ask for help if I feel like I should be able to handle something. It took me months to feel comfortable asking Lorien for help when I needed it at work, and she's my best friend.
I felt like asking for help was a sign of weakness, that people would judge me for not being able to handle the amount of tasks I had assigned to me. My mind did not register the increased volume of tasks and of work as the years went on. Our office has grown tremendously from last year and I have the numbers to prove it...
It's too difficult to try to explain what I do on a day to day basis, but it ends up coming down to having a certain amount of accounts assigned to me and performing different tasks on each of these accounts. I have 67 agents compared to Lorien's 42 and it's divided this way because of the next position up. For some reason my agents send in more accounts, but Lorien's agents write more business with us so the Assistant's job is where the division comes in.
Anyways, back to my point of this post. I've been doing my best to get as far ahead as I possibly can with my surgery quickly approaching. I wanted to make it as easy as I could for Lorien and the temp to take over any accounts left in my queue. Accomplishing this meant coming into work early and taking short lunches, something I've been doing on a regular basis since I got back from my honeymoon in October.
On Monday I buckled down and set aside time for each thing that I need to focus on per day. If something new was assigned to me after I stopped working on new business, it waited until the next day. Same with emails and entering loss runs. I just had to focus my time or I would get behind.
And it worked.
Until Wednesday when I had a down pour of everything. Agents were sending in submission after submission, most on a rush basis. Those not sending new business were sending information needed in order to clear accounts for quoting. Again, most on a rush basis.
I can handle stress. I can multi-task. I can get it done, but with four work days left (and no plan in place for my absence) I was starting to get a little anxious over all the things. I've been trying to talk to my manager about what needs to be done before I leave and what's going to happen while I'm out so that I can spend my time off focusing on my recovery and not worrying about my work, but there still has been no plan in place (other than bringing in a temp that we are supposed to train in the four days that I'm here to do a job that took me two months to train for...) Fingers crossed this new temp is awesome and picks things up quickly and can be hired as a new Technician.
At our meeting this morning, where we were going over our training plan for the temp, I stated that I needed help. Could I do the job by myself and get it done in the next 4 work days? Absolutely! Would it be less stressful for me to ask for help and focus on the million and one other items I still need to complete? Hell yes!
So I did it and her initial response was "I have no help to give you."
But then she offered to ask the other branch managers if they can spare some people to help. And the outpour of help was overwhelming and so appreciated! I only really needed to get rid of 15 accounts in order to feel the stress start to lift from my shoulders and I was able to work on the rest by entering loss runs. When I come in on Monday I'll have 8 (if not more) new business waiting for me. And I'm planning on working for a few hours on Sunday by just sending my reminders so that I can focus on training the temp on Monday as well.
So, the point of all this is, it doesn't do you any good to try to do it all. I asked for help, I got it, no one got hurt or thinks any less of me, I can go home and enjoy my weekend (minus the 2 hours of overtime on Sunday) and I can leave work next week to focus on recovering and coming back with a fixed wrist.
As soon as I got back to my desk I realized I had yet to change my daily calendar. Wouldn't you know it, but it fit perfectly.. I'm feeling really good right now. And I plan on keeping it that way!